Marketing & Promotion Ideas

People like their moments of fame and glory in this world. You can choose to honor someone publicly for their work, or you can shoot a TV commercial using people who have won a certain talent contest. He or she will be eligible to join the contest only if your products are bought, perhaps in a certain minimum quantity.

Help your key customers. If you want them to buy extra loads of your goods, then help them to run a coupon deal or promotion to sell off those stocks fast. Make it exclusive to them.

Be sincere in your CRM efforts. Don’t just sponsor a small concert. Go the extra mile, such as giving larger aids to society or education. Or be concerned for the environment, with 100% of your products using recyclable materials.

We have too many cards today, and too little benefits on them, such as discounts only on your merchandise. Partner with other organizations for more rewards to your card holders, such as resorts, airlines, theaters, sports equipment and so on.

If you run a contest, involve non contestants to increase your reach impact. E.g. you can engage them by allowing them to vote for the contestants.

If your brand is strong, offer your brand’s merchandise such as T-shirts, soft toys, bags, dolls and magazines. Your customers will help you advertise your brand when they sport your merchandise!

Don’t bore customers and retailers with run of the mill discounts, promotions and price offs. Do something sensational, such as breaking a world record. Have games and contests that go nationwide. The Subaru challenge in Asia is a good example. The contestant who can last the longest with his hand on the car wins a car, and this gets national radio and PR coverage yearly.

Tell, don’t sell. Advertise to get them curious and interested, then tell them about the wonders of your products, and how they are relevant to your customers.

Investments in Various Advertising Media

I have often had the privilege of handling small brands.  Why?  Because this forces me to think harder about how to spend my money.  When I first handled a small brand, I was really peeved that my colleague at the next cubicle gets to spend a couple of times more than me on advertising, when we both had very good ads to air.

Yes, big brands are sexy, and trust me, they get more visibility.  Small brands are good to test you on your tactical manoeuvres, and how you optimize your budget spendings.  The first thing to note is that you have to be selective on your choice of media.

The mistake of big brands is to spend their money on a lot of channels, just because they can afford to.  My advice is to focus your money on the media type that gives you the biggest return on ROI.  E.g. TV, in store, outdoor, radio and print ads are often ranked in order of awareness creation.  If you have just 2 million dollars, and you need 1.5 million for your TV ad to make an effective impact and 0.5 million on in store advertising, then do so.

The biggest mistake you can do as a small brand owner is to try to allocate 400 thousand dollars each to TV, print, outdoor, radio and in store advertising, as this creates little impact, and you just scratched the surface of each of the media type.

Leveraging Celebrities

How do you leverage celebrities that help in building your brand?  This is a sensitive topic, as it can be a quick way to top of mind, or it can be a quick way to your brand’s downfall.  Look at Tiger Woods, a clean, disciplined sportsman who got his reputation tarnished recently when his harem of girlfriends was discovered.

Get the right celebrity and your brand can catapult to the top of the charts.  The most important thing is to ensure that the celebrity is aligned with your brand equity.  Sexy lady for a family brand of cereals?  Richard Gere to promote acne creams?

You need to manage your celebrity like a talent manager would.  Treat them with utmost respect.  One good example will be when you approach them for a discussion, do you send your junior staff to talk to them?  I am sure the celebrities will rather to talk to someone more senior.

Next, you need to leverage them more.  Instead of them appearing just on your product packaging or on a TV ad, leverage for extra PR with them being interviewed by journalists.  Before I forget, send them lots of your products as well.  Look at it this way, if the celebrity does not fall in love with your products, you can be sure the relationship will be short lived.

Optimize Radio Advertising

Radio advertising has always been a challenge for many, as it is deemed difficult and challenging.  Most of the people on planet earth are visual people (up to 70%), as in they can visualize things better than hearing them.  This is an obstacle, but also an opportunity.

The keyword is visualize.  Create vivid descriptions that make the audience visualize pictures and images in their mind.  You have to give more details on the picture you want them to have.  E.g. at 1 am in the morning, I woke up to a cold night of 1 degrees C.  I went trekking over a rough, jagged, and craggy terrain, which was enveloped by dark sky, adorned by many bright stars.

Use sound effects and vocal variety to enhance the message better.  Go soft or loud, stretch certain words, and vary the tempo.  You will create very vivid pictures in your consumers’ minds.

One final advice I have is to not have the perception that TV is the same as radio advertising.  You cannot use similar or identical format towards both media.  Each requires its very own treatment.  The worst kind is just to port over the TV ad to a radio ad, without the visuals.  What you can do is to have similar messages for both media, but vary the format and treatment.